There is one single point in the review UI that does not fail to irritate me when I see it.

It's about how to understand the close reason Off topic->Bug reports.
I know that it has been discussed before, for example in "Bug reports and problems with the development version of Ubuntu should be reported on Launchpad", which concluded it would be good to make some changes in the text.

This question is not about the fact that the problem exists, but about that it still exists since the last discussion of it:

I'd like to understand why the problem still exists - the technical execution of the solution seems to be replacing a single UI text with the same meaning, but more clear.

Possibly there is a clear consensus that the text should be better, and how the meaning should change - but no documented consensus on the exact text change. It could be that the problem of the text has multiple aspects, and the existing proposals fix only part of it - that's at least not obvious.

Of course it can just be some problem of planing or scheduling the implementation.

What makes it so annoying to me it a chain of events that must be pretty common. The reason it always causes some confusion for me may be that I once remembered something inconsistent about it.

It goes like this: While reviewing close votes, first posts or low quality posts, it's common to come across a question representing a bug report in an obvious way.

My intuition tells me that it's clear cut - it's off topic because it's a bug report, so I'll go choose the close reason "off topic as bug report".

Of course I'll soon end up selecting the close reason

Bug reports and problems specific to development version of Ubuntu should be reported on Launchpad so that developers can see, track and fix these issues.

And I get confused because that text does not end after the second word.
It's that all I know about the question is that it is a bug report. So from plain logic, I can not make any other qualifications above that.

Is it true that the close reason applies to all bug report questions, or is the idea to prefer other close reasons about it, like "not about Ubuntu", "about an end of life version"?

An interesting point is that the information whether it should be reported at Launchpad has some value. But that would require to understand the bug report much deeper, to decide which software seems to be broken, and whether that software is available in the standard repositories.
The current message seems to send all bug reports to launchpad, right?

Maybe the solution is not to say what the sentence is saying in a more clear way, but instead say something more clear in the first place, simplifying the meaning?

I decompose the message I assume that the reporting of a problem specific to a certain version of a certain software is a bug report.

So, for the software "Ubuntu" and the version "development", the sentence

Bug reports and problems specific to development version of Ubuntu should be reported on Launchpad because it's useful

simplifies to

All bug reports and some other bug reports go to Launchpad because it's useful.

Do we actually mean that?

So, there were some proposals from the old questions - here, I'm basically asking whether we may have missed important points before,

(It would not be the first time that an "obviously trivial" change turns out to be not so trivial after reflecting it long enough.)

(Related: Are bugs necessarily off-topic?)


1 Answer 1


IMHO, the phrase "Bug reports and problems specific to development version of Ubuntu should be reported on Launchpad so that developers can see, track and fix these issues." is an excellent reason and doesn't need to be clarified or restated in any way. It not only indicates where bug reports should go, but also why. While there are many confusing things in life, I don't believe this is one of them.


As I believe we comment as to which bug we are referring to on current releases prior to voting to close as a bug, I don't perceive a problem here. If someone has a problem with a current version, if we read and comprehend the question I don't see how it gets tagged and closed innapropriately (even if newer versions are mentioned in passing) "Due to this I'm considering an upgrade to 16.04" doesn't indicate (at least to me) that the user is running that newer version.

  • Yes, that's all true - since you and me handle the sentences as logical expressions by know. What's missing is that it does not say which "Bug reports" The context may explain it ["This is a bug in currrent XY! Ok, bug to launchpad."] - but the context could also add to the confusion: Someone has a problem with software of the current version, but describes it mentioning newer versions in passing. It get's tagged as the new version.[...] Commented Mar 8, 2016 at 17:39
  • [...] Now: The user defends ithe question as not belonging to launchpad, as it's not really new version related. The further discussion tries to explain that his "problem" can actually seen as a bug, so tat the same term applies.... Commented Mar 8, 2016 at 17:39
  • And - I think whether a thing in live is confusing does not depend on the thing itself, but only how closely you look. Commented Mar 8, 2016 at 17:42
  • @VolkerSiegel I agree that confusion is a direct result of not paying adequate attention to detail. As to the rest, I edited my answer.
    – Elder Geek
    Commented Mar 9, 2016 at 23:55

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